Agropur buying Northumberland’s dairy business for undisclosed price

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LONGUEUIL, Que. – Agropur Co-operative is acquiring the dairy and food distribution assets of New Brunswick’s Northumberland Dairy Co-operative for an undisclosed price.

The assets, with annual sales of $67 million, include Northumberland’s Miramichi plant, which processes 27 million litres of milk a year, as well as its distribution centres and brands.

Northumberland will keep its hardware and building supply operations.

“We are very pleased with this deal,” Agropur president Serge Riendeau said in announcing the deal Monday.

“Both the hardware and dairy operations will remain in the hands of co-operatives, a strong economic model that supports community economic development wherever it is present. Agropur plans to maintain its commitment to New Brunswick and the Miramichi area in particular.”

Agropur CEO Robert Coallier said the dairy industry is increasingly competitive in Canada and around the world.

“The co-operative movement needs to consolidate in order to stay competitive and remain an important player in dairy processing. This agreement will help us maintain our position as an industry leader and enhance our ability to serve our customers coast to coast,” he said.

The transaction is subject to approval by Northumberland’s members as well as various regulatory approvals.

Quebec-based Agropur is Canada’s largest dairy co-operative with annual sales of more than $3.8 billion and processing more than 3.4 billion litres of milk per year at its 32 plants across North America.

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